Ever thought, “I really enjoyed the strict rigidity of that restaurant”?
Yet as independent restaurants grow into chains and personal empires, they too-often resort to cast-iron processes and rigid structures in order to manage the rapid increase in staff numbers.
It’s understandable, but it’s wrong.
They should instead be instilling in their staff the qualities and values that made their business popular in the first place.
Hospitality is the human side of a restaurant business. It’s what makes customers feel welcome, valued, and seen. It doesn’t matter how seamless and smooth the service was if the diners were made to feel like faceless walking wallets.
Well-trained staff - who have the trust of their managers - are confident in making decisions and dealing with situations because they understand the ethos and values of the business, and can convey that into a positive experience for the guest, without reference to a fixed procedure or checklist.
Of course thorough training is harder and more expensive. It requires meaningful contact with new staff members; and managers who are 100% clear on the owner’s concept and what it stands for.
But without it, all you have is tick-box training, and staff who will never be ambassadors for the brand.
Hospitality is a human business, and good restaurateurs recognize this and celebrate it – they don’t try to overcome it.